WORLD / EUROPE
Ex-Nazi guard, 100, faces war crime charges in Germany
Published: Feb 09, 2021 07:03 PM

Visitors walk between cells at the former Sachsenhausen concentration camp site of the Sachsenhausen memorial in Oranienburg, Germany, Aug. 27, 2020. The Sachsenhausen concentration camp was built by the Nazis in Oranienburg in 1936. More than 200,000 people were interned at the facility between 1936 and 1945, and about 100,000 died there. As a memorial and museum today, the Sachsenhausen memorial attracts about 700,000 visitors every year to witness the crimes of the Nazis. (Xinhua/Shan Yuqi)

A 100-year-old former concentration camp guard has been charged with complicity in 3,518 murders as Germany races to bring surviving Nazi staff to justice, prosecutors told AFP on Monday.

The man stands accused of "knowingly and willingly" assisting in the murder of prisoners at the Sachsenhausen camp in Oranienburg, north of Berlin, between 1942 and 1945.

He is considered fit to stand trial despite his age, the public prosecutor's office in the town of Neuruppin confirmed after the story was reported by the NDR broadcaster.

The case comes days after German prosecutors charged a former secretary at a Nazi concentration camp with complicity in the murders of 10,000 people, in the first such case in recent years against a woman.

The 95-year-old accused had worked at the Stutthof camp near what was Danzig, now Gdansk.

Germany has been hunting down former Nazi staff since the 2011 conviction of former guard John Demjanjuk on the basis that he served as part of the Nazi killing machine set a legal precedent. 

Since then, courts have handed down several guilty verdicts on those grounds rather than for murders or atrocities directly linked to the individual accused.

Among those who were brought to late justice were Oskar Groening, an accountant at Auschwitz, and Reinhold Hanning, a former SS guard at the same camp.

Both were convicted of complicity in mass murder at the age of 94 but died before they could be imprisoned.

AFP
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